‘Bitter pill to swallow’ as gyms must remain closed
- Credit: Archant
Gym owners are still pinning their hopes on a July reopening in the wake of the announcement they must stay closed even when pubs open their doors on ‘Super Saturday’.
Many had been preparing to reopen on July 4 after being closed for months and had started recalling equipment they had loaned out to members, installing infection control devices and putting hours into assessing all the risks.
But the industry was dealt another blow this week when Boris Johnson said gyms and leisure centres could not reopen on what is being dubbed ‘Super Saturday’ - the day pubs, cinemas, pubs, bingo halls and hair salons reopen to the public for the first time since March.
Ben Gray, owner of the Suffolk Strength Academy based in Ipswich, said; “We are trying not to get too frustrated about it but I don’t get some of the decisions the Government are making at the moment.
“I don’t have all of the information to hand but there do seem to be some myths about gyms.
You may also want to watch:
“We aren’t dirty, we clean all the time and did so before Covid.
“Germs can stay on the surfaces of machines, but they are very easy to clean.”
- 1 'Our fund is $13 billion and we’re holding $700m in cash' - The money behind Ipswich Town's new owners
- 2 Woman arrested on suspicion of drink-driving following A14 crash
- 3 Murder-suicide probe after couple found dead in Woodbridge
- 4 'You either deliver or you leave' - Cook's message to Town players
- 5 Paul Cook speaks about Ipswich Town takeover for first time
- 6 Serious crash closes road in Bury St Edmunds near A14
- 7 Woodbridge community 'saddened' after couple found dead by police
- 8 How busy was Bury St Edmunds town centre as lockdown eased?
- 9 National Trust 'deeply saddened' at death of volunteers in Woodbridge incident
- 10 A14 closed after serious crash between van and car
Outdoor gyms are allowed to reopen and boot camp-style classes of up to five people can take place outside but for many gyms this still limits their income.
“We wouldn’t have survived without our members,” Mr Gray added.
“The government assistance has helped a lot but now we are chomping at the bit to get back now.”
Live Fit Gym in Manningtree only opened last summer and owner Jack Cardy is disappointed that after a successful first year the business won’t be allowed to open next week.
“It is a bitter pill to swallow,” he admitted. “It has been mixed messaging which is tough.
“I completely understand the government need to get the economy going, but for them not to open us alongside pubs and other places is difficult.”
Mr Cardy pointed out that pubs bring in more tax revenue for the government than gyms do.
A spokesman for the Department of Culture, Media and Sport said: “We are continuing to work with representatives from the gym and leisure centre sectors on plans for a safe, phased reopening with the ambition for this to happen from mid-July, subject to public health guidance.”